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My Two Cents

black-woman

 

I am having a random deep thought moment!!! I just came back from a business conference so many, many things are running through my mind. Mainly my thoughts are on business. My current business, my new business  venture, businesses around me and businesses in general. I know that I am “called” to business, I have always zoomed in on businesses in my daily life. I know what catches my eye, what makes me frown up, what impresses me,what turns me off, and what is “suspect”. This particular conference was so thought provoking, and right on time. It not only made me think about where I want to be headed BUT mistakes that I have made in my own business and how I can improve them. We were given a lot of hypothetical situations that ALREADY boil my blood that causes glitches with small businesses. It pretty much floored me.

I am a black woman small business owner (with BIG DREAMS) and this is my two cents…….Those who know me knows what ticks me off in business … cluttered businesses of the same kind. Beauty salons, barber shops, and boutiques next door to each other just to name a few.Now, keep in mind we are talking about small businesses NOT corporations that are offering the exact same thing. We are going to also throw out the cliché  “What God has for you is for you” because I know this (blank stare).How does this build a community? What I usually see is businesses closing down and then a cycle of another hopeful opening up the same type of business because it is already set up. With boutiques I am always seeing the same leopard dress in the window. Where is the originality? One recent business I had been watching is THE WEAVE SHOP home of the $50 dollar weave. Even though I’m side eyeing the concept, It was a brilliant business plan that expanded. Not too long after, a whole bunch of replicas popped up and closed down within months. What sounds good and looks simple may not be for you. This person had a strategic business plan that was executed correctly. Whether they have good reviews or bad reviews, they are still growing. Business kudos to them (clapping my hands).

To the others that like to argue me down about how “I” feel and want to say  ” what about the liquor stores, the nail salons, and so on and so forth”. Well, did you know that a lot of times they are related or in a network together to sow that market up. Let me give you an example lets just say ummm… beauty supply stores (quick smile). They have that industry so sold up because they are the distributors to themselves .So it is on LOCK!!(we shall see about that)they have it mapped out, sign, sealed and delivered. Its kind of like being in the wizard of OZ and you find out who the wizard is, and realize you might not get home after all. As business owners we better click our heels (but really believing in Jesus to get our inheritance ). These monopolies are what we accept.We have done things the same way for so long that its unproductive. I’m tired of seeing small businesses close and dreams deferred. More importantly the age old question “Why” haven’t we built our own networks to build up healthy communities.I know that’s a deep question that can get even deeper.But it made me look at myself as a business owner, and those like me. Are we prepared ,are we executing our business plan or even have one. Are we teaching others how to succeed. Do we have the resources, or preparing for resources (credit lines).Are we going to make the same mistakes our entrepreneur families in the past made or will we do better.

Again this is MY TWO CENTS I simply want to see better. I want communities to THRIVE with small businesses with God given vision of different kinds .I want to see them expand and grow into empires. I want them to be US. More faith based businesses, Let this be OUR culture to uplift and encourage and lock down some markets on our own and create legacies for our children, grandchildren and many generations after that. I’m ready!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sooooo….What do I do with my daughters hair!!!!!

 

I often get questions about little girls hair.Well, allow me to be transparent as a mother of little girls,who happens to be a hairstylist who has had a journey of our own.I willingly admit,I am still learning.My journey really begins with my older daughter.She was born with a “head full of hair”(sounding like I’m old and southern,lol)beautiful soft curls ,it was ALOT of hair.We did pretty good until she was about three ,It was still softer hair so I did a lot of accessorizing ,but by four I realize her hair was still the same length. so for the next year I did the best I could with it. mind you , there was NO blow drying, pressing or any heat applied to her hair.not only was it not growing but her ends were very split. I just didnt get it!!!! OK age 5, she cut I chunk of hair off in the front.Now you look a mess!! Is this how we are entering kindergarten?! By now I’m researching,back tracking, praying for a solution.I DID find this website online called “SWEET NATURE by EDDIE” after going through the site with a fine tooth comb, I decided to order the products.LOVED IT!!!!!! and my baby’s hair was soft, and growing!!!  Six months later it reverted back again. Big Sigh! fast forward to six months later I was referred to a hair and skin doctor (not a dermatologist) She was more so an herbalist. and expressed that it was her diet (being exposed once again how much I “DON’T” cook) and suggested all these organic products for her that she sold there plus this special topical solution that she is known for. I bought it all.IT WORKED! I changed my baby’s diet and decided to keep braids in her hair fast forward two years. Her hair looks GREAT!! OMG!! what did I do specifically, lets back track I changed her diet(less fast food) IS NUMBER ONE. #2 I used only organic products on her hair.#3 I kept it in a protective hairstyle (braids) .

Those three easy steps really work.Now I know when dropping off your little girl at school you see all the different hairstyles some cute,some …well as moms we want our little darlings to look there best at all times. and we tend to look at others for inspiration. But, every head of hair is different.I think the BIGGEST mistakes we make is being impatient and trying to “throw a kiddie perm” in it. thinking that is going to make things better. It’s not.Please know that those are regular relaxers with a child with spiral curls on the box.Don’t do it,because a lot of times it is the beginning of the end for your child’s hair. Instead use these tips ~ Be patient  use good utensils like a wide tooth comb, detangling spray bottle,moisturizer.

~Don’t opt for the cheap products on the shelves. Invest in natural and organic products .Sweet nature by Eddie is great, and so is Shea Moisture products.

You WILL see a difference in there hair.

~Moisturize!!!!!!!! not oil but a cream based moisturizer made of natural ingredients. I actually shellac my girls hair with it, especially the ends.

~Opt for protective styles such as braids,and two strand twist, and hold off on the press and curls for special occasions.

~ What you put in your body does make a difference. eating right, vitamins, and water is a great start!

I’ll eventually post pics of her progress that I have taken over the years. I do know there are some different circumstances,but give your girls a good head start and be conscious with what you do with there hair.

Showing True patience

I know I see it ALL the time!!!!!A potential client see’s a stylist’ work on some form of advertisement whether it be a card,website,Flier, or even a referral.The work looks great,they come highly recommended and the potential client is EXCITED!! Now from a stylist perspective this is what we see (sometimes) an impatient client. I have seen SOME clients come in with unrealistic expectations, and expecting IMMEDIATE results .which in some cases can definitely be done.But I’m talking about the people that truly need repair work and is adamant in saying what they are not going to do. Sounds familiar? Well ,you have every right to do this,its your money, and your time. But …….expect limited results(sorry).

Let me give you an example,the front of your hair is broke off lets say from a weave(hypothetical) or constant pressing(shrugging shoulders)it measures 1 1/2 inches,the rest of your hair measures about 5 inches with a couple of 3 inch patches in the middle.The BEST result would be to get it cut, but you say” I don’t want to cut my hair right now or can you just add a couple of pieces in the front”………..blank stare with cow mowing in the background while tumbleweed rolls by…….big sigh..truthfully you probably wont like the results.Sure there are some stylists that will spritz,quickweave,and shalac that hair into  a one day style (kudos to those types of hair artist) but let’s work on long term results!!

I have a client who came to me as a referral, hair was stressed out, have been on meds for YEARS.So a lot of repair work was needed. She faithfully came every other week,and I’m a pretty honest person, her hair looked mediocre at best(I’m serious) but she kept coming and I kept caring for her hair. I’m SO serious but at the ninth month ****Breakthrough****her hair starting growing rapidly,it no longer was dull and lifeless.She said her hair hadn’t looked like that since she was in her twenties( she was a long way from that age ).But  consistency  was the key.1.She kept coming.2.she kept heat OUT of her hair.3. She trusted her stylist and was patient.Her words,”IT didn’t take a short amount of time to do this to my hair,so It wouldn’t take a short amount of time to repair it!” Words of Wisdom!!

Why a stylist “should” say NO!!!

I was talking to my fellow stylist , and we were discussing how clients resist hearing the word”no”. Well, here is a breakdown of why a stylist SHOULD say NO. I am honestly into healthy hair,your hair. I consider myself more of a longtime stylist, meaning, I consult,transition,map out,discuss,care for,transform,and maintain your hair.So, on your first appoinment we are NOT doing relaxer,tri-Color, with two tracks on the side.What?? No!!! I don’t do color on a new client because I have to analyze your hair, and how you will manage it. If it’s already in a damaged state , I can’t and you shouldn’t! Also, color is big change therefor I like to do things in stages (sometimes),and even though the process is longer the results will be better in the end and your hair healthier.Now, I have to admit, in my earlier years I had to learn to say no.As  stylist we try to appease clients, and build,but the reality is you are going to lose them anyway by doing something you knew in your spirit NOT to do.When you do do it and there hair is damaged, guess whats going to be said…”girl she took my hair out,she doesn’t know what she is doing”.

Prime example Micheal Jackson’s doctor..He chose to supply the “KING OF POP” with deadly medication,he knew the risk but he wanted the money and the status of being Micheal Jackson personal doctor…Now look at what happened.He lost him anyway……(extreme example,but do you get the point)

Why I decided to continue

For the past few years my life has been in a whirlwind. I love,love,love my website and get MANY visitors and even opportunities.But, to be frank I haven’t updated any information in years. Besides my busy personal life,owning a business,etc,etc. I was getting discouraged! I really was, I dont want to sound bitter or mean but alot of times I get discouraged with black woman and there hair. I DO!! because I know alot of woman SAY they want healthy hair, but they DO NOT want to change there habits, PLAIN,SIMPLE,PERIOD DOT COM!!!One thing is I am passionate about hair because there were no wearing weaves growing up.So you had to learn to deal with YOUR HAIR!!! And it amazes me when woman come in expecting miraculous results but dont understand not curling your hair everyday.(blank confusing stare) or you lie about it, and say NO I barely curl my hair.Please know that stylist can tell. We are looking at your hair from a different angle,and we see the truth from our angle.( I am stepping away from the podium and sitting down next to you eye to eye in a softer tone).Let me introduce myself , I’m Kelli.I LOVE hair, this is my passion,I truly want woman to not only be educated about their hair,but EMBRACE it.Embrace what would make you feel wonderful and give you that extra swagg in your walk. Lets talk about it!! Lets be honest!! I loved seeing a woman revamped. I’m not saying you cant get a weave, or what not,but True Health starts within. Have you ever seen somebody where they were working THAT look.THAT look wasnt working them.They had an extra umph in there step. Its because the are embracing their own look.THEY MADE A DECISION!! I want every woman and girl that steps out of my chair to have that. NO I’m not everybody’s stylist, I’m not confessing that.But I want to be a stylist that my clients  love coming to,and is pleased with the results. That keeps an open mind,where we can be honest with each other and have a long term professional relationship. Ill tell you a small secret ( if you mention this to me Ill look at you with a blank stare,its not up for discussion) but since I had my last couple of babies ,my body has changed and I am NOT embracing my thick girl thirties.and I have tried, read up on,and have done EVERYTHING to reinvent losing weight,that is everything but doing the right thing like eating right and exercising.it’s that instant gratification that I want, and I can get it but it wont be long term,and thats reality!! So as long as I keep skimming the bottom line true articles to read about what I can buy to lose 30 lbs in 2 days. well,Ill continue to get what I have gotten,nowhere and time lost and money spent on nothingness.Is that you with your hair???? Are you reading every hair blog,every Essence article but still doing everything wrong? Well,I am compassionate but the truth is the truth and there is no way around it,Let’s start making new decisions…and see new results…

That’s too bad that people flock to the negative!!

Ok, So I decided that I wouldn’t touch basis on this issue, because people can be SOOO defensive and walk in such a spirit of offense.And I want NO parts of it!!!! But, I have a passion for healthy hair, I truly do!! I decided a couple years ago to not log into different hair forums and sites, because as a professional stylist,we get HAMMERED!!! OMG!!(all the post are soo negative) granted yes, so many people have had BAD experiences with their hair,and even with stylist and salons. Before I began my website about 5+ years,and years before that I totally did not understand why I was seeing a heavy rotation of new clients with broken,unhealthy hair.I actually prayed about it, and asked God to help me understand this epidemic and even prayed that I would cross paths with people who were praying for a stylist such as myself.God is faithful!  As the forums have expanded including Youtube,facebook I have noticed (this week to be exact) extensive convo’s about the natural and/or DIY’ers and the lack of unity in those communities.Gosh!! well,please believe me this is not everyone. Actually there are quite a few stylist and salons NATIONWIDE that embrace natural hair,natural products,and professional expeditious service.No I’m not a naturalist stylist. But, I LOVE our NATURAL TEXTURE,I embrace it and encourage anyone who wants to leave all chemicals alone.I AGREE. and I am very concious of the ingredients that are in these products and see the damage it has done to our hair and being passed down to our daughters and granddaughters.In fact Motowngirl.com is a childhood friend of mine.and we use to be soo in to our hair,years and years later when we crossed paths again as adults.It was no surprise to either of us what direction we both went in. and we were brought together again full circle.I actually learned alot on her website,as a stylist and I can pass info forward to my clients. As a professional I totally approve of her site. So,No every professional should not be put in a BOX.Yes, thats too bad that soo many people do not trust stylist.I am glad that some people have found out what works for them in there own bathroom.But NO I have not lost any business, I dont speak ill-will of anyone.Do what works for you. I have seen lots of people who are doing a great job mixing there own products, and keeping there hair quite healthy.I wish you the best,But don’t always flock to the negative,if your season is up at the salon.IT’s O.K.!